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Land Use & Development

Texas Land Use and Development Attorneys Help Clients Navigate Restrictions

Knowledgeable business advisers handle land use litigation matters

Texas is a sprawling state with a seemingly endless horizon and an insatiable appetite for development but it is also increasingly becoming a land of use restrictions. If you’re interested in developing property in the Lone Star State, you may have to navigate an array of restrictions and obtain the requisite use permits. At Hayes, Berry, White & Vanzant, LLP, our real estate attorneys have extensive experience in matters related to land use and development. Whether you’re a real estate developer, a homeowner or a business owner, we can provide the legal guidance you need to achieve your property goals.

Established lawyers provide reliable counsel on a variety of land use issues

The value of a property depends greatly on the use an owner can get out of it. Real estate investors and even homeowners must be aware of the numerous impediments to their free use of a particular property. However, there are also ways of obtaining exceptions. Our real estate lawyers manage many land use issues, such as:

  • Variances — We help developers obtain administrative exceptions to land use regulations. Rules for obtaining a variance vary from one municipality to another, but generally require the applicant to show that existing restrictions create a hardship for property use.
  • Easements — An easement is the legal right to use another’s property for a specific, limited purpose. Landlocked properties generally require easements for egress.
  • Eminent domain and reverse condemnation — When a government body seizes property for a public purpose, it must justify the taking and pay the impacted property owner(s) fair market value. It is also common for government action to negatively impact the value of adjacent property without an outright condemnation. In such cases, the impacted owner can initiate an action for reverse condemnation to receive compensation for the loss of property value.
  • Nonconforming uses — When a municipality passes a new zoning restriction, an existing property could be impacted. However, if the property has been continually used in a certain manner, its use can be “grandfathered in,” so the owner’s rights are not diminished.
  • Private covenants — A restriction on a deed can prevent a property owner from making improvements to a property.
  • Rezoning — With larger parcels and subdivisions, a single variance might not be sufficient. A developer must request a rezoning of the area to build according to plan.
  • Regulatory takings — Similar to eminent domain, a regulatory taking occurs when government mandates such restrictive use of a property that the land might as well have been taken from the owner. In such cases, the government is compelled to compensate the owner fairly.
  • Special use or conditional use permits — Similar to variances, these permits allow an exception to be made when the otherwise impermissible use benefits the area or serves a public purpose.

Wherever you have purchased or plan to invest in real estate in Denton, Gainesville, Flower Mound, Celina or vicinity, we can provide the trustworthy legal guidance you deserve. In many cases, a land use issue must proceed to an administrative hearing or civil trial for resolution. Administrative procedures, like civil trials, often have many levels of appeals, so you can trust our firm to manage your case seamlessly from start to finish at the appellate level.

Contact a knowledgeable Texas land use lawyer to schedule a consultation

Hayes, Berry, White & Vanzant, LLP advises clients throughout the greater Houston area on land use issues and represents their interests in related litigation. Whether you are a real estate developer, a homeowner or a business owner, we are prepared to protect your property rights. Call us at 940-230-2386 or contact us online to schedule a consultation at one of our four offices, located in Denton, Flower Mound, and Gainesville.

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